The world remembers many magical staffs, but none so well as that wielded by Moses. Stories of Moses tell that his staff had supreme power over water, allowing Moses to part the Red Sea and strike a fresh water spring from a stone.
Ashley and Kinga believe the staff is still in existence, and seek the very spring Moses created in hopes that it will lead them to the staff. In a church in Madaba, Jordan, they find a map of tiles set into the floor. A mountain range - the most likely source of water along Moses' exodus road - calls to them as their first clue.
In these mountains, they find a deep well. Could this be the spring created by Moses? Flash floods and the depth of the pit prevent them from exploring, but a local geological expert, leads them to a nearby ruin and introduces them to his archaeologist friend, Jacob Shavit, who points out an aqueduct and cistern. Jacob explains that both constructions were designed by the Nabataeans, a local tribe said to hold the secret to manipulating desert water.
A Nabataen elder meets them at the former Nabataean Treasury at the terminus of a deep, narrow channel in the rock, peppered with altars to water, and tells them that the Nabataeans got most of their water from a place called Aaron's Mount. Ashley, thinking quickly, realizes that "Aaron" means "exalted," and could refer to the prize of the desert: Water. If "tomb" was mistranslated as "chamber," Aaron's mount could be the resting place of the staff!
They rush to Aaron's mount, where they find an ancient chamber. The staff isn't there, but this alternative explanation of Aaron's mount could be the first step on a long path to finding the holy rod.
Their next quarry is the Stone of Destiny, used in the coronation of Scottish kings. Although it was said to have been given by the Scots to the English several hundred years ago, Ashley is intrigued by a rumor that says that the Scots gave the English a fake. He's determined to prove this true or false.
They go to see the official stone, which is a crumbling slab of sandstone - not the midnight black slab etched with symbols told of by legend. They investigate the coronation site of the Scottish kings of yore, Scone Abbey, where Ashley is reminded of a Gallic prophesy telling of the island of Iona rising above the sea at the time of the apocalypse. Iona is the burial place of all the kings of Scotland, and the refuge of St. Columba, guardian of The Stone.
The collection of clues compels them to the abbey at Iona, where they find a single, simple room, unmarked on the abbey's plans. This must have been the cell of St. Columba! They scour the walls, the ceiling, the floor - and hear a creak! Peeling back the carpet, they see a trap door. Carefully, carefully, Ashley pries it open to reveal a massive black stone gouged with arcane symbols. In order to protect The Stone, they daren't pry any further to confirm that this really is the treasure they've been seeking. Nonetheless, Ashley and Kinga can barely contain their excitement at the thrilling conclusion of this quest.
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